N°12-02/04/2021 NATO defense ministers met on February 17, 2021 with increased military spending on the agenda.
Pentagon’s Defense secretary Lloyd Austin at his press conference outlined US foreign policy and the return "to the international order established by the United States after World War II." For this we must “cement the centrality of the transatlantic link”, that is to say the link between Europe and the United States in the alliance “to strengthen the political role of NATO” in plain language it is under the command of the USA and it is decided in Washington.
This US-dominated Euro-American military alliance, founded after World War II against the Soviet Union, is today a means of imperialism's domination over peoples and nations. It intervenes throughout the world for imperialist interests: Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya… or with the war in the Middle East for economic, political and military domination over strategic regions.
To impose its imperialist domination, NATO sheds a lot of blood.
The USA and NATO are asking for much more.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said this will be the seventh consecutive year of growth in defense spending by European Allies, which increased by $ 190 billion compared to 2014. Meanwhile, even before the Covid-19 pandemic worsened the situation, 690 million people, or 8.9% of the world's population, were undernourished.
"We expect all allies to honor the commitment" to increase their military spending to 2% of GDP, the Pentagon official said. NATO forces will acquire "adequate nuclear military capabilities", adapted to the situation created by the end of the Treaty on Intermediate Nuclear Forces (scrapped by the US).
The US wants to speed up the deadlines for deploying in Europe not only the new B61-12 nuclear bombs, but also new medium-range nuclear missiles.
The enemies are pointed out: Russia is "the main threat that NATO faces in this decade". But also China: "challenges against security posed by China", whose economic activities and technology may have "an impact on collective defense and military preparation in the area of responsibility of the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe".
There is an urgent need to put an end to all these conflicts, to the horrors of imperialism and to the capitalist system, because it is indeed the very existence and the logic of capitalist development that generate this situation and wreak havoc.
What does the increase in military spending within the framework of NATO mean for Italy, Germany and France, the three major powers of the EU?
For Italy 2% of their GDP means to go from 26 billion to 36 billion euros annually.
On February 17-18, when the Senate and Chamber passed a vote of confidence in the Draghi Government, the re-confirmed Minister of Defense Lorenzo Guerini (PD) was already participating in the North Atlantic Council; he confirmed Italy's commitment to increase military spending from 26 billion to 36 billion euros annually and added to Defense allocations those intended for military purposes by the Ministry of Economic Development: 30 billion plus 25 which will be taken from the Recovery Fund. Italy has pledged to devote at least 20% of military spending to the purchase of new armament. On February 19 minister Guerini signed a new agreement of 13 NATO countries for the joint purchase of "missiles, rockets and bombs which are indeed decisive in the air battle". Thus, as Prime Minister Mario Draghi underlines, Italy will strengthen its increasing role in: “our projection towards areas of priority natural interest, such as the enlarged Mediterranean, with particular attention to Libya and the eastern Mediterranean, and Africa ”.
The “Enlarged Mediterranean” in NATO's geography stretches from the Atlantic to the Black Sea and southward to the Persian Gulf and Indian Ocean operating from the Sigonella base (Sicily).
The appetite of imperialists is sharpening and they are once again preparing to commit terrible crimes to impose their economic and geostrategic interests all over the world.
Berlin submitted a record annual budget of 53.03 billion euros to NATO, an increase of 3.2% over the previous year (51.4 billion). However, this figure represents 1.57% of the country's GDP and therefore is well below the 2% target set by NATO. Still, Joe Biden will put pressure on NATO allies whose defense spending is below the 2% target. Former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen warned last month: "Europeans should not expect to get away with this because Joe Biden has taken over the presidency."
At a hearing at the National Assembly on February 19 Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly confirmed "the goal of increasing the national defense effort to 2% of gross domestic product by 2025." This requires us to"act accordingly, she says and adjust our effort and better direct our resources." The minister thus spoke of "accelerating on certain ambitions" ...... "In line with the analyzes of the update of the Strategic Review, we will improve our ability to detect threats and attribute attacks, especially in new areas of conflict [...]" We will strengthen the operational readiness of our armies so that they can train better to deal with all threats more comprehensively and with greater agility, including from the perspective of higher intensity conflicts. ". Same speech as Draghi …
In May, the French navy will join the Japanese and American fleets in a military exercise of naval drills in the South China Sea to face the fleets of North Korea and China!
This region of the Pacific Ocean is claimed in its entirety by the People's Republic of China, particularly from a commercial standpoint. Indeed, each year, container ships transport the equivalent of 5,000 billion goods in this area.
War and armaments are extremely expensive for hefty profits.
Rearmament on this scale is based on the destruction of workers' standard of living and their social protection to strengthen the war arsenal.
In a study published on January 27, the Observatory of Economic Conditions (OFCE) considers that:"France must have the ambitions of its resources" thus "the objective is to spend 100 billion euros more, in particular for defense and security, during the next five-year term",the defense investment is the most economically efficient the report dare say! The report pounds away about investing in new industrial capabilities encouraged by assured outlets, and goes on to say that it is necessary to give companies military programs again, accelerate deliveries of Rafale already ordered, add a new order, design a French missile program …
It is an important source of profit for the capitalists, for the wage earners it is a huge burden to bear.
France’s military interventions are a multi-billion euro financial sinkhole. Yet in this matter the government never hesitates to release the necessary funds that it refuses to meet the demands of young people, employees and the unemployed.
France is the 4th largest arms exporter. Needless to say the enormous profits made by capitalist groups specializing in the manufacture and sale of weapons. They all develop a most dangerous arms race. After nuclear weapons, chemical weapons, drones, they also prepare "cyber attacks", the use of increasingly complex electronics in weaponry, space warfare …
More than ever the struggle for peace, for the rejection of imperialist wars is a pressing issue. Faced with this escalation and the aggressive presence of NATO, it is more than urgent to develop the struggles for the withdrawal of France from NATO, for the dissolution of this imperialist organization and of all imperialist organizations, for nuclear disarmament, for the cessation of its interventions in Africa and the Middle East; these matters must be central to the struggle for peace. This overarmament policy can only be fought through the struggle of the peoples against war and the political struggle to open up a revolutionary perspective and the construction of a socialist society. There can be no revolutionary change without the destruction of this armed wing of the great capitalist powers.
Putting a definitive end to this situation requires an end to the capitalist system itself.